Capítulo I _ Cinema – Arte

Dançar para encontrar a felicidade.

Cláudia Marisa
Instituto de Sociologia – UP, Portugal | ESMAE – P. Porto, Portugal
N.º 11 (2020)
Publicado 2020-10-14


The film They Shoot Horses, Don’t They? (Sydney Pollack: 1969) based on the 1935 novel of the same title written by Horace McCoy describes the life of two young adults seeking for an artistic career. Gloria (played by Jane Fonda) dreams of being an actress in the emerging Hollywood industry. Robert (played by Michael Sarrazin) aims to be a director in Hollywood’s competitive world. Gloria and Robert meet and decide to participate in a Dance Marathon longing to win and, consequently, to accomplish their artistic dream. In effect, during the Great Depression, Dance Marathons that had emerged in the 1920s as a merit dance competition gained popularity as a “show” due to the duration of the performance (could last from a few hours to several weeks) and the physical and psychological endurance required to participate in the event. For those who battled (the dancers) meant the possibility of acquiring artistic and public visibility along with the pursuit of celebrity. For those who were audience it opened the opportunity to be voyeur of the human life, witnessing daily existence as an extraordinary experience. Hence, it can be argued that Dance Marathons puzzling the boundary between fiction and reality, can be understood as an emergent form of reality shows. Based on the analysis of the film They Shoot Horses, Don’t They? we aim to make a critical counterpoint between the phenomenon of Dance Marathons and the contemporary structure of talent shows within reality shows setup.

Palavras-chave Sociologia da vida cotidiana, Sociologia do corpo, Sociologia da arte, Maratonas de dança, They Shoot Horses, Don’t They?.
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Este trabalho encontra-se publicado com a Licença Internacional Creative Commons Atribuição 4.0.

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